7 daily ways to create a sense of urgency

7 daily ways to create a sense of urgency

Some people just know how to instill energy and a sense of urgency in an organization. The rest of us need to work harder at how we show up, what we write, and what we say

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5. Make it personal

Go beyond overall progress reports to highlight personal wins, and focus future efforts with individuals and teams. “[IT leaders can] demonstrably revisit priorities by sharing with their teams how they personally have focused their efforts on the challenge at hand,” Bostick says.

6. Stop meeting like this

Make an effort first to kill needless meetings.

Unnecessary, unfocused, or overly long meetings are urgency killers, says Kotter. Make an effort first to kill needless meetings. Reconsider who is invited to a meeting (studies show that collective performance may decrease the more people are involved in an endeavor). Consider shortening meeting times; the content of a meeting will often expand to fill the time allotted – time that could be devoted to focused action. Meetings in motion – conducted standing or walking – can also increase engagement.

7. Perfect your elevator pitch for change

It can help to have what Kohli calls a “stump speech” handy to keep the drivers of urgency front of mind for folks. Keep it brief, he says, and “repeat to whoever is willing to listen.”

Also, don’t assume everyone gets the situation and need for urgency the first time. “Ask whether the priorities are clear,” says Bostick. “Too often it is assumed that the urgency is understood and therefore shared and acted upon. Communicate and communicate again.”

 [ Get our free resource for leaders: Fast Start Guide: Creating a sense of urgency, with John Kotter. ]

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